Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge

Coordinates: 33°57′14″N 102°45′44″W / 33.95389°N 102.76222°W / 33.95389; -102.76222
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge
Sandhill cranes at Muleshoe NWR photo by Wyman Meinzer
Map showing the location of Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge
Map showing the location of Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge
Muleshoe NWR
LocationBailey County, Texas
Nearest cityMuleshoe, Texas
Coordinates33°57′14″N 102°45′44″W / 33.95389°N 102.76222°W / 33.95389; -102.76222
Area6,440 acres (26.1 km2)
Governing bodyU.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge is a 6,440-acre (26.1 km2) wildlife refuge located about 20 mi (32 km) south of Muleshoe, Texas, on Texas State Highway 214. It is the oldest national wildlife refuge in Texas, having been established as the Muleshoe Migratory Waterfowl Refuge by executive order of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1935.[1] Roosevelt issued a proclamation in 1940 to change the name to the Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge.[2] In 1980, Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge was designated as a National Natural Landmark by the National Park Service.[3]

The refuge is a stop for migratory waterfowl flying between Canada and Mexico. The refuge includes several intermittent salt lakes, some of which have been modified to extend their wet periods. Paul's Lake, on the east side of Highway 214, is spring-fed, and hosts wildlife during times when the other lakes are dry. If sufficient water is present during the winter, the refuge hosts tens of thousands of sandhill cranes.[4] The largest number of cranes ever recorded was 250,000, during February, 1981.

Other wildlife includes wood warblers, meadowlarks, raptors, burrowing owls, black-tailed prairie dogs, jackrabbits, cottontail rabbits, coyotes, black-footed ferrets, spotted chorus frogs, and badgers.

The prairie ecosystem includes plant life such as wildflowers, grasses, yucca, cacti, and mesquite. Rangeland management techniques include controlled burning and grazing.

Northeast of White Lake is a small area of white gypsum dunes, similar to those found at White Sands National Park in New Mexico, though these are much less expansive.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lively, Jeanne F. "Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  2. ^ "Proclamation 2416". Wikisource. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  3. ^ "National Natural Landmarks - National Natural Landmarks (U.S. National Park Service)". Retrieved 2019-03-30. Year designated: 1980
  4. ^ Webber, Tammy (2021-09-09). "Farmers restore native grasslands as groundwater disappears". AP News. Retrieved 2021-09-10.

External links[edit]